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I have two different products that I would like to put on the market. Where to go from here?

MitchM

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Okay, so I have two ideas which are both basically alternative and improved forms of products that are already on the market. What I am wondering is how different does the product need to be to patent it (and in what circumstance I should) and whether or not branding/going to a retailer will be beneficial.

One thing that worries me is that after I get the product made and put on the market - what will prevent somebody bigger from squashing me?

One of the items is fitness related, so I was thinking that either Dick's or Sports Authority could work out as far as using a retailer goes, but I really have no idea.

If I got a manufacturer to make the product (not quite sure how to do that yet either) is there a way to get some kind of loyalty there? Then I could probably just use amazon, right?

This is my first time making an attempt to do something like this so I am kind of just trying to get my bearings right now. Any advice?
 
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Vigilante

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Okay, so I have two ideas which are both basically alternative and improved forms of products that are already on the market. What I am wondering is how different does the product need to be to patent it (and in what circumstance I should) and whether or not branding/going to a retailer will be beneficial.

One thing that worries me is that after I get the product made and put on the market - what will prevent somebody bigger from squashing me?

One of the items is fitness related, so I was thinking that either Dick's or Sports Authority could work out as far as using a retailer goes, but I really have no idea.

If I got a manufacturer to make the product (not quite sure how to do that yet either) is there a way to get some kind of loyalty there? Then I could probably just use amazon, right?

This is my first time making an attempt to do something like this so I am kind of just trying to get my bearings right now. Any advice?

Sports authority is out of business
 

Vigilante

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Wow, I had no idea. Well - do I at least have the right general idea?

People have spent a lifetime trying to accomplish what you have distilled into your opening post. Can it be done? Yes. Are you on the right track? Who knows.

you'll need to spend the next couple hundred hours studying this before you know if you are or not.
 
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MitchM

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People have spent a lifetime trying to accomplish what you have distilled into your opening post. Can it be done? Yes. Are you on the right track? Who knows.

you'll need to spend the next couple hundred hours studying this before you know if you are or not.

Well thanks for making me realize the magnitude of my ignorance. In my mind I would contact a supplier that made the product and ask them if they could work on the alternative model of what I am suggesting. After paying a higher up front fee the prices would come down and I would buy it in higher numbers (I realize how simplistic this is). As far as branding and going through a retailer goes - I have no idea though.

I guess I'll be hitting the books and testing things out. Thank you for responding!

Edit: Buying that book right now. I really appreciate the recommendation.
 

amp0193

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One thing that worries me is that after I get the product made and put on the market - what will prevent somebody bigger from squashing me?

Nothing really. Once you make a splash, the sharks show up. The lady who invented Mermaid Tails attracted the interest of Snuggie, and they took a big piece of her market share with their own competing product. She was really butt hurt about it, but hey, that's business.

Any advice?

Execute hard and fast.
 
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MitchM

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Nothing really. Once you make a splash, the sharks show up. The lady who invented Mermaid Tails attracted the interest of Snuggie, and they took a big piece of her market share with their own competing product. She was really butt hurt about it, but hey, that's business.



Execute hard and fast.
Thanks for the response. So do you think that going to a retailer like Dick's with the product would be a good strategy? Also, if I'm able to patent either of these products then I should be getting some profit regardless..
 

amp0193

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Thanks for the response. So do you think that going to a retailer like Dick's with the product would be a good strategy? Also, if I'm able to patent either of these products then I should be getting some profit regardless..

Patents are fine if you have something really unique. However, it's not too difficult to circumvent patents and make a slightly different competing product.

Landing a big box retailer like Dick's would surely give you a boost over competition, and some staying power. Easier said than done, however.
 

Choate

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You are not going to get from point A (idea) to point B (actualized product) from this thread alone. There is a lot of research for you to do, but to help point you in the right direction, its probably unlikely for you to land shelf space in a highly competitive environment right away like Dick's. You don't have any proven sales; there are a plethora of other issues that could come into play. But regardless, Dick's is simply a distribution channel for finalized products, and you do not have a finalized product yet. So no need to worry about Dick's just yet.

If I got a manufacturer to make the product (not quite sure how to do that yet either) is there a way to get some kind of loyalty there? Then I could probably just use amazon, right?

(When you get to this point), you should call lots of manufacturers and discuss options. What other fastlaners have done is have part A manufactured at one factory, part B manufactured somewhere else, assembly in USA, etc. If you put all of your eggs in one basket, that basket can be easily stolen (your idea) and sold to other businesses. This depends on your product itself of course but keeping it separate prevents a greedy merchant in Guangzhou with poor morals from getting any ideas himself.

One thing that worries me is that after I get the product made and put on the market - what will prevent somebody bigger from squashing me?

If you were still able to make $10,000/mo for 12 months before a large competitor came in and squeezed your profits down to $400/mo, would it really bother you? Cross that bridge when you get there, by creating hypotheticals you are limiting your most important factor as to whether or not this succeeds: taking action. In the end, patents aren't what protect products so much as the business around the product - branding, packaging, customer service, product pictures, descriptions, etc etc etc.

If you took someone else's product and made a small change/improvement to it and can patent it now, who's to say someone can't take what you did and do the same? Patents are useless in this regard.



Here's my personal take. There are lots of threads and knowledge on this forum regarding selling on Amazon. One possible route is to first focus on creating the best product you can, with the best packaging, customer service, key word descriptions, and pictures, and putting it on Amazon as soon as possible. Validate your idea, and if it works, scale it up, and then think about if you really want to go through other distribution channels like Dick's, who might want exclusive rights to sell and take a bigger chunk of your profit margin in return for many more sales.

Start by putting one foot in front of the other and keep going until a problem hits you in your face - not dwelling on problems 1 month to 1 year down the road. You can do that once you have established regular sales.
 
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MitchM

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You are not going to get from point A (idea) to point B (actualized product) from this thread alone. There is a lot of research for you to do, but to help point you in the right direction, its probably unlikely for you to land shelf space in a highly competitive environment right away like Dick's. You don't have any proven sales; there are a plethora of other issues that could come into play. But regardless, Dick's is simply a distribution channel for finalized products, and you do not have a finalized product yet. So no need to worry about Dick's just yet.



(When you get to this point), you should call lots of manufacturers and discuss options. What other fastlaners have done is have part A manufactured at one factory, part B manufactured somewhere else, assembly in USA, etc. If you put all of your eggs in one basket, that basket can be easily stolen (your idea) and sold to other businesses. This depends on your product itself of course but keeping it separate prevents a greedy merchant in Guangzhou with poor morals from getting any ideas himself.



If you were still able to make $10,000/mo for 12 months before a large competitor came in and squeezed your profits down to $400/mo, would it really bother you? Cross that bridge when you get there, by creating hypotheticals you are limiting your most important factor as to whether or not this succeeds: taking action. In the end, patents aren't what protect products so much as the business around the product - branding, packaging, customer service, product pictures, descriptions, etc etc etc.

If you took someone else's product and made a small change/improvement to it and can patent it now, who's to say someone can't take what you did and do the same? Patents are useless in this regard.



Here's my personal take. There are lots of threads and knowledge on this forum regarding selling on Amazon. One possible route is to first focus on creating the best product you can, with the best packaging, customer service, key word descriptions, and pictures, and putting it on Amazon as soon as possible. Validate your idea, and if it works, scale it up, and then think about if you really want to go through other distribution channels like Dick's, who might want exclusive rights to sell and take a bigger chunk of your profit margin in return for many more sales.

Start by putting one foot in front of the other and keep going until a problem hits you in your face - not dwelling on problems 1 month to 1 year down the road. You can do that once you have established regular sales.

Thank you for the thoughtful response! I am in the middle of "One Simple Idea" right now - by Vigilante's recommendation. So far it is putting a lot of things into perspective. Right now I think licensing might actually be a really good option as things stand.
 

ArtRyumin

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Okay, so I have two ideas which are both basically alternative and improved forms of products that are already on the market. What I am wondering is how different does the product need to be to patent it (and in what circumstance I should) and whether or not branding/going to a retailer will be beneficial.

One thing that worries me is that after I get the product made and put on the market - what will prevent somebody bigger from squashing me?

One of the items is fitness related, so I was thinking that either Dick's or Sports Authority could work out as far as using a retailer goes, but I really have no idea.

If I got a manufacturer to make the product (not quite sure how to do that yet either) is there a way to get some kind of loyalty there? Then I could probably just use amazon, right?

This is my first time making an attempt to do something like this so I am kind of just trying to get my bearings right now. Any advice?
Hey there MrSterlock I'd recommend having a look at this thread that helped me a lot to plan my approach with a similar situation and to get a better frame of approach I think you'll find it beneficial.

What stage to patent and seek lawyers

Hope you get good use from that

Sent from my SM-G935F using Tapatalk
 

Walter Hay

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Okay, so I have two ideas which are both basically alternative and improved forms of products that are already on the market. What I am wondering is how different does the product need to be to patent it (and in what circumstance I should) and whether or not branding/going to a retailer will be beneficial.

One thing that worries me is that after I get the product made and put on the market - what will prevent somebody bigger from squashing me?

One of the items is fitness related, so I was thinking that either Dick's or Sports Authority could work out as far as using a retailer goes, but I really have no idea.

If I got a manufacturer to make the product (not quite sure how to do that yet either) is there a way to get some kind of loyalty there? Then I could probably just use amazon, right?

This is my first time making an attempt to do something like this so I am kind of just trying to get my bearings right now. Any advice?
I have frequently posted on this subject. Loyalty from a manufacturer in China is extremely hard to achieve. Here is a link to one of my relevant posts: <a href="GOLD - Sharing my lifetime experience in export/import. Product sourcing specialist.">Sharing my lifetime experience in export/import. Product sourcing specialist.</a>

Walter
 
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